There are some classic books that I think you really should read as part of growing up. I’m thinking of comics such as Tintin and Asterisk, and books by Roald Dahl, and the Narnia series, and The Lord of the Rings trilogy. I read – and loved – all of these, but there are other children’s classics – including Arthur Ransome’s Swallows and Amazons – that I missed. So, after finding this edition in a charity shop a while back, I decided to make amends.

Swallows and Amazons by Arthur Ransome

Even thought I am now 34, I have to confess that I thoroughly enjoyed every chapter of this great tale of sailing boats, islands, buried treasure, and pirating.

I know that it is all too common for people to bemoan the modern world and to look back at a previous age with rose-tinted spectacles, so I will resist that particular temptation. What I will say is that in my opinion this is absolutely the stuff that childhood should be all about: discovery, adventure, learning, and play.

A great read for children of any age!


(Telegram sent by the children’s father to their mother, giving his approval for their proposed unsupervised sailing adventure.)

Swallows and Amazons for-ever!